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The Good Intent pub in Rochester to be demolished for housing

A pub, popular with folk music fans, is to be demolished to make way for housing, despite a campaign to save it.

Planning permission has been approved for eight three-bedroom homes on the site of The Good Intent in Rochester.

Residents have tried to save The Good Intent
Residents have tried to save The Good Intent

More than 150 letters of objection were sent to Medway Council, but the go-ahead was given by councillors at a planning committee.

Leading the battle was Mel Barnett, whose Morris dancing group has met at the pub in John Street for more than 16 years.

The mum-of-three said: “It is very sad. We feel passionate about the GI.

"It is a part of our social life and somewhere we can take our families.

"There are not many places where, on the middle of a housing estate, you can get live entertainment.”

Mel Barnett campaigning to save her local pub (12766010)
Mel Barnett campaigning to save her local pub (12766010)

But her Wolf’s Head and Vixen Side, which has won many awards and is a key feature at Rochester’s annual Sweeps Festival, has now found an alternative venue.

The dancing troupe, which celebrates its 25th anniversary next year, now meets at The Sans Pareil, Frindsbury Hill, Strood.

Mel, who lives in Strood, said “We have a nice big space in a conservatory to practise in.
"We have members who come from all over Kent. It’s not in Rochester, but at least we are still in Medway, which is important to us.

“It’s mixed emotions. It’s sad the GI is to go, but we are glad we have found somewhere else.”

The pub will open its doors for the last time on Friday, January 31, 2020.

Over the years The Good Intent built up a reputation as a respected folk and acoustic music venue with live acts coming from all over the county.

It became an integral part of the community with a bridge club, open mic, fancy dress themes parties, poetry and booking readings also held there.

For a while a youth club was held in the pub, overseen by the local PCSO, to keep youngsters off the streets and out of trouble.

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